So yesterday IBM and the Watson team had some symposium for Harvard Business School and MIT Sloan students. WHATEVER, right? But, part of this event was open to Regular People and included a talk by Dr. David Ferrucci (it was interesting, also I wonder if he has one of these in his office - I didn’t ask). Anyway, after his talk there was a mock Jeopardy round - 3 HBS students against 3 MIT students against WATSON.
Unfortunately for purists, they had this terrible system wherein all 3 team members from each school had a buzzer, and they could all sort of huddle up before responding to the clue. This resulted in a number of lockouts and a bunch of family feud style whisper-storms followed by (frequently wrong, in MIT’s case) responses.
Harvard had a couple advantages: they were on their home turf, and one of their players was a former contestant. MIT had one big asset, an enormous, obnoxious asshole of a human being who sat next to me and bellowed out encouragement as if this scrimmage were a big-10 game. Harvard beat MIT handily, but Watson beat them both. It was pretty alright.
Oh p.s. everyone who attended got a baseball hat with Watson’s logo on it. What an age to be alive!